10/22/15 Secret Government Emails

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The use of secret emails by Washington officials is a critical issue.

The most infamous is presidential candidate Hillary Clinton and her senior advisers who used off-the-record emails on a private server stored in the Clinton home.

In spite of agency policies, the Federal Records Act — federal law — is crystal clear on how correspondence is to be retained.

Lisa Jackson, the EPA Administrator from 2009 to 2013, used the fake name “Richard Windsor” for her email.  This was likely to avoid complying another federal law — the FOIA act.  Jackson wasn’t even the first head of the EPA to do so.  Elizabeth Browner started the practice under President Bill Clinton.

Republicans have gotten into the act, too.  Karl Rove, political adviser and deputy chief of staff to President George W. Bush, was caught using private email for White House business.  His emails were processed on a server held by the Republic National Committee.

Lois Lerner, the woman at the center of the IRS scandal targeting certain non-profit and Jewish groups, used several aliases for her emails.  Including one named after her dog.

Some senior IRS officials used an instant messaging system — similar to Snapchat — that automatically deletes texts moments after they’re read.

No one’s doing this unless they have something to hide.

There should be criminal consequences for federal officials who knowingly conceal email correspondence from legal scrutiny.

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